01 July 2003

to caffeine or not to caffeine?

That is the question.

I am desperatley trying to improve my health through improving my nutrition, and for awhile I was doing a darn good job at it. until.....I used the time honored rationale of 'just one won't hurt me' and indulged in a decidedly unhealthy meal of fish and chips some weeks ago and that was, as they say, the beginning of the end. Now it seems that since one didn't hurt, I can justify another. And that leads to another. And so on. You know the story. I am finding ways to rationalize just about every 'bad' food choice I make. Granted, the plan I am supposed to be following is very restricted and cuts out many of the staples that the rest of my family is not willing to give up. This makes it twice as hard. Shopping for everyone else is a torturous exercise of dangling each forbidden item in my face. Preparing them is worse. Lucky for me I really do notice a difference when I eat the forbidden foods or I would scrap the whole exercise in the blink of an eye. As it is, I am left yearning for the tastes, yet dreading the payback. A constant battle of will. It sucks.

The worst of this restriction is the cutting out of caffeine. For a mother of a toddler and two pre-teens coffee is in my mind a staple. With nights that last far past everyone elses bedtime and mornings that begin at a time when even the roosters are hitting the snooze alarm, the need for a cup of the elixer of life is not a luxury but needed for survival. But it too has a price to be paid. After cutting it out for several weeks, I realize upon reintroduction just how bad it is. The jitters and racing heart don't help with my effeciency. I get a boost of energy, sure, but I can't harness it so I just spin out of control. Appetitie suppression is a double edged sword - great for the waistline, bad for long term energy supply. And the worst is the craving for more. I am an addict and it is true...I can't just have one cup. The more I drink, the more I need. It truly sucks.

I want coffee. I need coffee. But today I will not give into its seduction. I will remain strong by reminding myself of its painful reality. I will, however, take a nap. I have yet to find any truly negative side effects to napping. Is 9:00am to early for a nap?

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